His Side of Things: Arthur on "Later"

Date 4/2/2021
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Psychic Arthur Explains His Side of Things in a weely article, giving the male and female perspective, no matter how different!

Psychic Arthur Explains His Side of Things in a weely article, giving the male and female perspective, no matter how different!

Ben’s working on a project with an insane deadline, when his girlfriend Lucy calls. “Hi. Are you busy? I just wanted to let you know that I …” Ben, who is focusing on the project, interrupts, “Hey, I’m swamped right now. I’ll call you later.” Emotionally shut down from a stressful day, Ben simply goes home. The next day, in a better frame of mind, he calls Lucy and leaves a voice mail when she doesn’t pick up. Later that night, Ben calls Lucy again thinking: “I guess she’s been as busy as I’ve been.” When Lucy does answer the phone after his fourth try, she’s distant. The jokes she once laughed at are dismissed. The invitation Ben extends for dinner that weekend suddenly gets shot down. Ben asks: “What’s wrong?” Lucy replies: “If you weren’t serious about calling the other night, why should I believe that you’re serious now? You said you’d call and you didn’t. You didn’t even apologize. You’re a liar!”

Okay, so here’s what just happened.

When a man says: “I’ll call you later,” he’s basically saying that it’s his intention to return the call at a future moment in time, hopefully sometime before he dies. Men focus on one thing at a time – usually what’s in front of them at that moment. Ben doesn’t know how long it will take to deal with what’s in front of him; he doesn’t give a specific timeline, just that it is his intention to return the call, which is, when he returns the call. It also doesn’t guarantee that “later” will take place within the next 24 hours. It just means that he’ll call, um… later.

Now, when many women hear a man say the word “later,” (a word which the Merriam Webster dictionary defines as “at some time subsequent to a given time,”) it suddenly takes on a precise exact time - usually twenty minutes or the time it takes for the man to reach an assumed destination. Additionally, some women tend to mentally add the word “tonight” after “later.” So, if two or more hours pass with no return call, the woman starts thinking, “he’s using me,” “I can’t take this,” “he’s just like all the others,” “if he’s not talking to me, there must be someone else,” “I guess I’m not that important,” etc. If more than a day or two goes by, she believes there’s another girlfriend and/or a secret family.

So, is it any wonder that when Ben did call that Lucy greeted him with her feelings of disappointment, anger and resentment?  That is, when she answered the phone. Lucy saw that Ben was calling, but waited for him to call four times before answering the phone to “teach him a lesson.” However, men will not read “punishment” behavior to mean, “Oh, she’s trying to show me what it was like for her that I didn’t call.” Nope. How most men will react to that kind of behavior is, “I guess she’s not interested anymore. I’ll move on.”

So the moral of the story: When a man says he’ll call later, he’s not intentionally lying or leading a woman on. It just signifies that the intention is there. He’ll call when he calls.

* Note: This primarily relates to dating couples in a relationship. “I’ll call you later” after a first date will be covered later… er, I mean in a few weeks.

Author's Photo by Arthur x8237


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